Re: Soft hyphen (Re: Cougar comments)

Jonathan Rosenne (
Mon, 12 May 1997 10:18:46 +0300

Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 12 May 1997 10:18:46 +0300
To: "David Perrell" <>
From: Jonathan Rosenne <>
Subject: Re: Soft hyphen (Re: Cougar comments)
Cc: "Martin J. Duerst" <>,
In-Reply-To: <>

At 15:33 11/05/97 -0700, David Perrell wrote:
>Within an HTML document there is markup and there is displayed text.
>Blurring that distinction by associating conditions for the display of
>a particular character based on that character's post-formatted
>position would change the whole notion of displayed text -- a very bad
>precedent at odds with current practice.

The distinction is already blurred. What about SPACE? I remember the ISO
committees used to argue whether SPACE was a graphic character or a control
character. In HTML it is not a simple graphic character either. SHY and
NBSP also are "in-between". The fact that nearly nobody implements SHY and
NBSP correctly according to 8859 is beside the point.

Anyhow, I think SHY and NBSP represent obsolete solutions to the problems
they intended to address, and today markup based solutions seem to be more

For example, I don't think it is useful or friendly to go over a document
and insert SHY in all occurances of a certain word, should I wish to be
sure your browser hyphenates it the way I want. It would be nicer if I
could declare it just once. Also, I need a way of saying "do not hyphenate
this word", which SHY cannot do.